$40M going to traffic, intersection improvements for Johns Island drivers

VIDEO: $40M going to traffic, intersection improvements for Johns Island drivers

CHARLESTON COUNTY, S.C. (WCSC) - Charleston County recently received $40 million from the State Infrastructure Bank (SIB) to use for the Main Road Corridor Project.

The project extends from Bees Ferry Road to Betsy Kerrison Parkway, but has been broken up into three sections. The money will go toward Section A, which is the current priority.

Construction project manager, Sunshine Trakas, said this section was chosen first because of safety and congestion issues.

“It involves the widening of Main Road from two to four lanes, addressing the intersection of U.S. 17 and Main Road where we’ll be installing a full directional interchange,” she added.

A section of Main Road will be shifted east and go over a marsh area. A fly-over bride is also expected to be constructed so cars can go up and over Savannah Highway to get on or off Johns Island.

“It will also include a dual lane roundabout at Chisolm Road and River Road and provide bike and pedestrian accommodations,” she added.

While the area is still considered rural, it’s seen explosive growth. County officials say it’s important to fix these problems because of the congestion and the need to get people on and off the island, especially during emergencies. There are no major hospitals on Johns Island.

“In the a.m. peak hour, in terms of level of service, the road is operating at level service ‘E’ which is almost failing, and in the p.m. peak hour the road is already failing which means it’s over capacity,” Trakas said.

The plan was chosen after a public comment period in the spring of 2020. Section A is expected to cost $111 million and the entire project is expected to cost $195 dollars.

“We’re always trying to seek addition funding,” Trakas said. “We want to be good stewards of the tax payers’ money, so when we can get additional funding it helps stretch those tax payer dollars.”

The county will have to submit permits to the Army Corps of Engineers this year and hopes construction will start in 2022.

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